Carrying cash through Airport

Discussion in 'General' started by NightStalker, May 27, 2010.

  1. NightStalker

    NightStalker Well-Known Member

    Does anyone of you have any trouble passing through new full body scanners at Vegas airport? How are they different from old scanners? What's the acceptable cash limit one should be carrying in order not to get in trouble? Any suggestions/ideas about carrying cash are welcome?
  2. daddybo

    daddybo Well-Known Member

    Last I checked, it wasn't illegal to carry any amount of cash inside the country.
  3. moo321

    moo321 Well-Known Member

    If you're under $10k, you should be ok. Above that, you may want to consider wiring the money, traveler's checks, or an account with a national bank that has a local branch in Vegas.

    That said, Vegas airport probably has a lot of people carrying a lot of cash.
  4. Pro21

    Pro21 Well-Known Member

    You must be joking!

    Vegas is the one place where you won't have a problem. You have to take the money out of your pockets and hold it over your head. It's other airports where it can be a major problem especially if you are young and/or ethnic.

    The money will not show up in the scanner in your carryon so you may want to put it in your bag.
  5. daddybo

    daddybo Well-Known Member

    Its not illegal. But I'm not young or ethnic. :laugh: Honestly, I've never had problems carrying large amounts of cash through an airport. (Okay, I'm not being totally honest... I don't usually go throught he scanners either.) But, its still not illegal. :whip:
  6. Pro21

    Pro21 Well-Known Member

    No, it is not illegal, but many players have had cash confiscated in airports. The DEA confiscates the money and then says, "Prove it isn't drug money." The players then have to hire a lawyer and fight to get the cash back. Eventually you get the money back but it is usually 5k in legal fees.

    By the way, there is a very good thread at about how they confiscate money from your car with illegal search and seizures.
  7. NightStalker

    NightStalker Well-Known Member

    thread at BCC?

    Couldn't find the thread, can you please point out?
  8. NightStalker

    NightStalker Well-Known Member

    Thanks for all the responses..

    Are you sure about it?

    The thing which I am uncertain is that what do you need to prove:
    1) it is your own legal money, how about carrying bank receipts?
    Or 2) Is it not drug money? How you can prove it?
  9. FLASH1296

    FLASH1296 Well-Known Member

    I was stopped this week for carrying 20K in cash — but what gave it away was the 20K in large chips that showed on the T S A monitor.

    Be careful.

    I had to talk my way out of it by offering a ton of proof that i was traveling to a Casino. It took awhile but I was early for my plane.
  10. WRX

    WRX Well-Known Member

    A repeat of material I posted at Stanford's site

    I had the pleasure of encountering the full body scanner at McCarran Airport last month. Coming soon to an airport near you. Some lines of passengers are now directed to the scanner, and get a full patdown as well. You will be directed to take ALL contents out of your pockets, and put them through the conveyor belt. On protest, you will be allowed to pocket cash and other valuables, and put just your empty wallet or empty pouch on the conveyor belt. However, staff will not volunteer this information. I suggest putting all cash and chips in baggies, and carrying the baggies inside your bankroll pouch. Then before approaching the screening area, take out baggies, and put only them into your pockets, while putting your empty pouch and wallet in your carry-on bag or coat to go on the conveyor belt.

    Or you may be able to avoid all of this by looking for a line that has no full body scanner. However, TSA staff routinely merge two adjacent lines, and then direct passengers from the combined line alternating between the regular metal detector and the full body scanner. They don't want to make it too easy to evade.

    Check your dignity and any hope of receiving basic human respect at the door before you leave home.

    By the way, with those machines they can see the size of your schwanzstücke.

    I have no intention of letting my cash out of my grubby fingers, especially after reading reports of theft by TSA agents such as this (which came to my attention courtesy of another contributor):

    I have printed this article, and will carry it with me whenever traveling. It may be useful if I ever encounter TSA agents who try to insist that I put cash on the conveyor belt.

    The following notice on the TSA Web site explains the requirement of completing a customs declaration when transporting $10,000 or more out of or into the United States. This impliedly acknowledges that it is lawful to carry any amount of currency WITHIN the United States, as well:

    (Dead link:

    This one, "Traveling with Special Items," might also be helpful, as it impliedly says that you can keep your cash on your person, saying, "We recommend that you carry these items with you at all times:"

    (Dead link:

    Here's a link to the ACLU's press release concerning the settlement of Bierfeldt vs. Napolitano, which stemmed from the March 29, 2009 incident in which Ron Paul's assistant was confined for a half hour, rudely interrogated, arrested, and then quickly un-arrested, for carrying cash through an airport:

    This give information on two new TSA directives to its agents, issued in connection with the settlement. The first states that “screening may not be conducted to detect evidence of crimes unrelated to transportation security.” The second states that “traveling with large amounts of currency is not illegal,” and that to the extent bulk quantities of cash warrant searching, it is only to further security objectives. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to locate the full texts of these directives. Top secret, I suppose.

    These directives appear to supersede the position taken by the TSA in the following press release, which asserted that the TSA had authority to investigate "movements of large amounts of cash through the checkpoint ... if suspicious activity is suspected":

    (Dead link:
  11. WRX

    WRX Well-Known Member

    To be entitled to seize cash, the federal government needs only "probable cause" to believe that it is proceeds of a crime. What amounts to probable cause pretty much lies in the imagination of the judge. The burden of proof then shifts to the owner to prove by a preponderance of the evidence that the cash is NOT proceeds of a crime. There is no right to a jury trial. Be afraid.
  12. chichow

    chichow Well-Known Member

    What was the breakdown in chips? TSA isn't going to know the chip denomination from the scanner. So you could be talking four 5k chips or are you taking purples, etc.

    I'm just trying to figure out how many actual chips you were hauling for TSA to complain. And whether it was TSA at Vegas or some other airport.
  13. FLASH1296

    FLASH1296 Well-Known Member

    They did NOT even examine the chips.

    That is not the issue.

    The chips were stored with the cash.

    Not that I'll make that error again.

    It was the chips that appeared as metal on their scanners,
    thus prompting the physical examination, with the comment:
    "Watcha' got in there - coins?"

    They let me go, but not until they took digital photos of
    my boarding pass and driver's license, for T.S.A. records.
  14. Sonny

    Sonny Well-Known Member

    Here you go:

    (Dead link:

  15. shadroch

    shadroch Well-Known Member

    Jet Blue advises that if you are carrying a large amount of cash on a domestic light, that you advise the TSA ahead of time. It does not say what it considersa large amount, nor if you should do it before you go to the airport or simply before you get screened. Such advice is worthless.
  16. chichow

    chichow Well-Known Member

    I would speculate (again speculate) that it wasn't the chips. I would guess it was the cash.

    If you brick up your cash (5k wads of say 20 dollar bills) those wads are thick enough, that the TSA can/may/will investigate.

    On the other hand, if it is 5k wads of say 100 dollar bills, those are thin enough that they don't look as large / brick-like

    You can also spread-out (its not as neat) your cash into sheets and secure in manila envelopes.
  17. chichow

    chichow Well-Known Member

    So how many chips? 5? 50? 500?

    Just wondering in terms of a rough estimate in trying to picture how they would show in a scanner.
  18. FLASH1296

    FLASH1296 Well-Known Member


    Why would I carry "bricks" composed of small bills ?

    The T S A peeps made it abundantly clear that it was the chips that they initially viewed.

    Paper is NOT dense enough to look like more than a gray shadow.
  19. FLASH1296

    FLASH1296 Well-Known Member


    RE: the chips.

    $500 and [over-sized] $1,000 denominations.

    "½ and ½" for an aggregate 30 chips.
  20. chichow

    chichow Well-Known Member

    I am going to make an assumption. Of course this assumption could be false.

    If getting the cash from a bank…

    ... and taking out $20,000, sometimes the branch may not have all of that available in 100s. Perhaps the bank is at the tail end of their next fill or the level 2 employee with access to the vault isn't there that day. So rather than ending up with 2 bricks of $10,000 in 100's denominations, you end up with larger/more bricks of 50's and 20's.

    Also if you are withdrawing say $3000 a day from an ATM, you could also end up with all 20's.

    I am not presuming there are not other ways of getting cash.

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